Wednesday, April 01, 2009

shooting for hdr

I recently attended two classes on hdr. One was given by matt kloskowski and the other by ben willmore. Both were different and both were excellent. I have had some pretty good results with hdr but learned that i can make some improvements. I always welcome training as i think everyone of us in this crazy business can improve in all aspects of what we do.
In this post i am going to give some tips for the shooting side of hdr and in the next post i will go over what to do with the images after you have them shot.
- Always use a tripod.
It will still work without one but just not as good. For example in the image above i did not use a tripod and it is not sharp. Things are shifted and could be much better. I hate tripods so if i can start using one so can you.
- Choose a scene with a full tonal range.
You can once again start shooting in the midday sun. You are looking for blocked up blacks and blown out whites, and of course everything in between.
- Bracket enough that you get full detail in the shadows and highlights.
You can shoot over a 7 or 9 stop range. Since its digital its free so shoot more than less. When you are shooting, have your cameras drive on high speed so you will get less movement, in clouds for example.
- Bracket using your shutter speed and keep your aperature constant.
I set my camera to auto bracket by 1 stop, shutter speed, using the function button.
- If you have a cable release and mirror lock up, use them.
I dont have a cable release so i just hold my breath. It helps mentally.
- Shoot in raw mode and at the highest bit depth your camera will go.
The d700 for example will shoot in 14 bit. This will give you many, many levels of grey.
- Last but not least shoot at a low iso.
Along with enhancing detail, grain and noise will also be brought to life. Keep it low.
Thats all i can think of for the shooting side of things.
I will go over the computer tips tomorrow.

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